‘A Practical Guide to International Issues for Scottish Family Lawyers’ by Susie Mountain, Donna McKay, Ken MacDonald


Paperback: 978-1-913715-82-3
Published: February 2024
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This book navigates a way through various jurisdictional matters to which practitioners should have regard when tendering advice to family law clients. Even where a case initially appears to be straightforward, it is imperative (from a risk management perspective) to ensure that comprehensive advice has been provided.

For families, increased global mobility has potential significant consequences. This practical guide distils the key issues into accessible sections, focussing on jurisdiction, enforcement, arbitration, protective agreements and the movement of children. This is a useful reference guide for those involved in advising clients on a daily basis, for the preparation of legal submissions, for students or simply those with an interest in this fascinating area of law.


Susie Mountain is a solicitor-advocate, an accredited specialist in Family Law and a trained collaborative practitioner. Susie is based in Aberdeen, but regularly appears in courts (including the Court of Session) across the country. She has particular expertise in cross border/international family law cases, child relocations and cohabitation cases (relating both to claims on separation and claims on death). Susie is a member of the Family Law Association (FLA) and of Consensus. Susie is passionate about educating younger lawyers entering the profession and frequently delivers seminars both in person and online.

Donna McKay is a solicitor. She is accredited by the Law Society of Scotland as a family law mediator, as a specialist in family law and as a specialist in child law. She is also an experienced Collaborative lawyer. Donna has over 20 years of experience in family law. Donna has a particular interest and expertise in child law including child relocation cases, contact/residence disputes and adoptions. She also has experience in complex financial provision cases. Donna is skilled in traditional negotiation and is an accomplished litigator. Donna sits on the Board of the North East charity “Avenue” (providing services such as mediation, supported/supervised contact and counselling) and is the chair of the local pod of Consensus (North East Scotland pod). She is a member of: Family Law Association (FLA); Comprehensive Accredited Lawyer Mediators (CALM); and Consensus.

Ken MacDonald is a leading disputes lawyer with 30 years’ experience. He is dual qualified in English and in Scots law and is Head of International Arbitration at Brodies LLP. Ken has been involved in the handling of disputes through negotiation, mediation, arbitration, expert determination, international arbitration and litigation with a view to securing expeditious resolution or avoidance of disputes. He attained the Diploma in International Dispute Resolution (Arbitration) with merit from Queen Mary University of London. He is a former President of The Society of Advocates in Aberdeen.


Chapter One – Relationships Entered Into Abroad
Chapter Two – Jurisdiction on Separation: Scotland
Chapter Three – Jurisdiction on Separation: UK and the Channel Islands
Chapter Four – Raising an Action in Scotland: Which Court?
Chapter Five – Brexit
Chapter Six – Contest of Jurisdiction
Chapter Seven – Protection: Pre and Post Nuptials and Other Forms of Agreement
Chapter Eight – Arbitration
Chapter Nine – Enforcement
Chapter Ten – Parental Rights and Responsibilities
Chapter Eleven – The Hague Convention
Chapter Twelve – Relocating With Children: “Shared Parental Intention”
Chapter Thirteen – The Welfare Principle
Chapter Fourteen – Views of Children
Chapter Fifteen – Other Considerations for the Court in Child Relocation Cases
Chapter Sixteen – Relocating From Scotland to Other Countries
Chapter Seventeen – Preparing Your Client’s Child Relocation Case
Chapter Eighteen – Cases of Interest
Chapter Nineteen – International Child Abduction After Brexit
Chapter Twenty – Habitual Residence
Chapter Twenty-One – Conclusion